Hillary Clinton to visit Gulf states

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is moving to shore up ties with its Arab allies in the Persian Gulf as fears about Iran's nuclear program mount and is sending Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on a three-nation trip to the region beginning this weekend.

The State Department said Thursday that Clinton will visit the United Arab Emirates, Oman and Qatar starting Sunday where she will hold talks with leaders focused on regional security, the Mideast peace process and development.

It will be her second trip to the Gulf in as many months. She attended an international security conference in Bahrain in early December.